Knights even out weekend series, overcome Golden Eagles 4-3

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Courtesy of UCF Athletics

ORLANDO – Jeff Matulis threw eight innings with six strikeouts  as the University of Central Florida Knights even out the series winning 4-3 against the University of Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles Friday night, March 29 at Jay Bergman Field.

“I know if I kept it close with that defense playing great we had a great chance at the end.” said Matulis about tonights game.

The Knights are still in second place in Conference-USA and is still tied with Rice University.

Knights Head Coach Terry Rooney was satisfied with todays win against the Golden Eagles and congratulated Matulis with his performance in tonight game.

“In the end of the day Matulis did a great job and that was a team win,” said Rooney about tonights win.

Southern Mississippi pitcher Andrew Pierce made it difficult for the Knights to score in the beginning of the game. Pierce had 7 1/3 innings pitched and four strikeouts but received the loss against the Knights.

The Knights at first didn’t look like they were not going to win this game against the Golden Eagles. The game started getting rough for the UCF in the fourth inning.

When first baseman Tim Lynch reached on base by a hit by pitch from Matulis and then Golden Eagles catcher Chase Fowler hit a double across the left field line and moving Lynch to third. Fowler finished the game 1-4 against UCF.

The at bat from Golden Eagle shortstop Travis Creel gave them the lead when he hit the ball to Knights shortstop Tommy Williams and giving Southern Miss the lead.

By the fifth inning Golden Eagles second baseman Isaac Rodriguez single to start it off for the Golden Eagles. Rodriguez went 1-for-4 in tonights game.

Golden Eagle Right Fielder Mason Robbins hits a double to right field scoring in Rodriguez making it a two run game. Robbins went 2-for-4 against UCF.

Then third baseman Blake Brown hit a pop fly to right field to tag Robbins on to third base. After designated hitter Jared bales hits a single scoring in Robbins and making it a 3 run game for the Golden Eagles. Bales went 2-3.

It was a scoreless game for the Knights until the eighth inning when Knights right fielder Erik Hempe hits a double to left center that scored in Barber and Vasquez and making it a one run game. In the same inning Golden Eagles shortstop Travis Creel overthrows to home and Hempe moves on to 3rd base and gets closer to score. Hempe went  2-4 in tonights win for the Knight.

“We had the momentum back and forth all game and that eighth inning. The eighth gave us all the momentum and Spencer Davis shut the door so we have all the momentum coming in for tomorrow but we still gotta come out and play baseball.” said Hempe about the game.

The game was tied with a single by catcher Chris Taladay who scored in Hempe in that same inning. Talady started the game catching for the Knights and ended the game at third base. Taladay went 2-4 in tonight’s victory for UCF.

UCF took the lead when Golden Eagles reliever Jay Myrick walked knights shortstop Tommy Williams with bases loaded and scoring in Taladay. This made it a one run game for the Knights.

Knights reliever Spencer Davis closed the game with one strikeout and the save for the Knights.

The Knights play Saturday March 30 at Jay Bergman field at 12:30 against the Golden Eagles.